In a move that should make sense to anyone with a heart, New York has officially banned cosmetic pet tattoos and piercings. The new law, which will go into effect in 120 days, was signed by Governor Cuomo on Monday and includes strict penalties ranging from fines of up to $250 to jail time.

flicker dog
image via Criminal Intent

Although cosmetic pet tattoos or piercings fall under the category of animal cruelty (which is illegal across America) in most states, charges and punishment can easily fall into a grey area. Thankfully, New York has decided to take the existing rules one step further with a specific legislation banning the ridiculous trend. Similar laws were first passed in Pennsylvania and New Jersey will be following soon.

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“It’s simply cruel,” said Assembly member Linda Rosenthal, the Manhattan Democrat who sponsored the legislation. She added that while people can choose their own “aesthetic predilections,” companion animals don’t have that luxury.

The recent legislation was most likely inspired by the controversial photo of a dog that had been inked by his tattoo artist owner while under sedation. The photo went viral quickly and sparked an outcry from animal lovers worldwide, prompting New York to clarify its stance on the abhorrent practice.

Of course, there are exceptions to the law for pet owners who have permanently marked their furry companions for medical or identification purposes.

Via One Green Planet

Lead photo via The NY Post